It’s a sad fact that teen drivers are more likely to be die in auto crashes than any other way. Parents try to minimize the risk by signing their teens up for safe driving classes and having open conversations with their teen about the dangers of drinking and driving. But every year, thousands of teens are injured or killed in alcohol-related crashes, and that’s why parents may want to consider installing an ignition interlock for when their teen gets behind the wheel.
Why would you choose an ignition interlock for your teen? Take a crash from 2012 in Toronto as an example – a 19-year-old man was in the left lane of the highway, speeding down the wrong side of the road. He collided into a mini van, instantly killing two people and injuring another. Once he was removed from his vehicle with the jaws of life, he was charged with 12 counts including impaired driving causing death and criminal negligence causing death. His blood alcohol concentration (BAC) was twice the legal limit of .08.
Another 18-year-old teen from Ontario was charged with impaired driving causing death after he crashed into a pedestrian recently. Although details have not been released because he is under the age of 19, under Ontario’s impaired driving laws he may spend time in jail, will lose his driver’s license, and may be required to install an ignition interlock in any vehicle he drives.
Both of these examples show what can happen when teens make the choice to drink and drive. In a split second their entire lives will change, but if they have an ignition interlock device installed in their vehicle, the choice to drink and drive is taken away from them. If they are drinking, the car simply won’t start, and that fact will give a lot of parents peace of mind when their teens are out for an evening.